July, the female labours

In the men’s labours June, July, and August are all harvesting and threshing images, which emphasises the central role of agriculture in medeival life, but to be honest it got a bit boring. So in the female version I’ve pared it down to one image, and Mrs july is helping with the harvest, although she could just have easily have been gleaning – worrever, she is making the point that often men and women worked side by side in medeival agriculture.

There was a lot of playing in this image. The wheat is pretty standard, but I had another go at the circular treatment of ground I noticed so much at the V and A exhibition, but this time using two more contrasting colours. My hope was to depict the stubble post harvest, but kids have been asking me for months if I’m sewing a pizza, and then pointing out that the tree looks like a mushroom on top…

Actaully I think that’s brilliant. I told Gareth about it whilst he was wet stretching it for me, and after he’d stopped laughing he told me all about how he once co-wrote a paper becasue he’d genetically engineered a plant to extract explosive toxins from agricultural land in warzones. He said he just tweaked the plant, the other guy did all the research.

I’m pretty pleased with the tree, actaully, it’s like the little medeival lollipop tree of M C Escher.

July’s cats are Newt and Tadpole. In reality they never met. Newt broke my heart by getting some sort of leukaemia/lymphoma and dying when he was only two (I spent months nursing him), Tadpole came along straight after and was named in his honour. Then Tadpole broke my heart again, I came home one day and he was all dead and contorted on the floor at only 18 months old. The vet was so concerned he did a post mortem, concluding that it was a sudden, massive heart attack. They two  very sweet little greykins (well, actaully, they were both enormous cats) so I thought it would be nice if they could chase mice in the sun together, because I think they would have got along famously.

I will get back to the ABC tomorrow

~ by opusanglicanum on September 18, 2017.

8 Responses to “July, the female labours”

  1. I love that people are taking an interest in what you are doing, even if it is calling medieval art pizza! Lovely work, I love the lounging nature of the female.

  2. It certainly emphasises the back-breaking toil of harvest time. My back aches just looking at it! I think I’d want to join Newt and Tadpole frolicking around a tree!

  3. She’s reaping, but with grace in her flowing figure. Beautiful work!

  4. I’ve gleaned. I was only ten at the time but I wouldn’t want to do it again!

    • the closest I got was when I was ten and my mum took me to knebworth to see Led Zep – I got more excited about the wheatfield we were camping in (I presume the farmer had done a quick calculation and decided he’d make more money from campers than harvest, so he just told folks to camp on top of a ripe field) because I’d just learned about quernstones, so I tried making one with the wheat lying around and a couple of rocks

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